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Opinions of Monday, 3 June 2013

Columnist: Kofi Thompson

No political party can succeed with a dark ages world-view

In 21st century Africa, no political party that does not tolerate dissenting voices is likely to appeal to the fair-minded and independent-minded African (whether educated or not).

A political party of that nature, is also unlikely to be one that brims with cutting-edge ideas, about moving society forward, which will attract voters in numbers sufficient enough to enable it win national elections in the continent comfortably.

And neither will any political party vying for power in national elections, in 21st century Africa, be successful, if the most powerful and influential individuals amongst its leadership, secretly still hold a Dark Ages world-view, that somehow members of their ethnic group are superior beings, whose pre-colonial traditional ruling elites' natural place ought to be at the helm of the social order.

Above all, in an Africa in which smartphones with internet access to Facebook and Twitter are all the rage amongst the younger generation, and thousands of private radio and television stations bring the latest news to even the tiniest of hamlets on the continent, it is folly of the highest order, for any group of politicians to think that they can successfully hide the truth from their people, for ever.

If they want to still remain relevant in Ghanaian politics, let those members of our political class, who seem to have forgotten that democracy is not only a system of government, but is also a way of life based on tolerance, be guided by all the above.

Over the long run, no political party in 21st century Africa, can succeed with a Dark Ages worldview - and the sooner Ghanaian political parties that are failing to rid themselves of the arrogant, intolerant and violence-prone extremists in their midst, understood that, the better it will be for them.

A word to the wise...